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With kanban swimlanes set for stories restrict cards to stories and subtasks for a specified epic.


Would be grateful for some help on a straight forward need that seems impossible to implement. 

The aim

For a single project with two epics, one epic for each of two teams, display and progress sub tasks for each story in swimlanes, (ie based on stories) in a kanban board for each team. 

Ie subtasks for each story only relate to one epic in one kanban board and another kanban board shows the subtasks per story (separated as swimlanes) for the other epic in the other other board of the project. 

This way each story (issue) and their subtasks and their progress and activity can be visualised in separate boards for each of the two project teams by separating the two project components as epics.

Background and steps

In a new project kanban I enabled backlogs, then within the roadmap set up 2 epics and added added several stories for each epic. Within the kanban I set up several subtasks for each of several stories in one epic and some more in the second epic.

I then set up two additional kanban boards within the project (ie multiple boards). The intent was for one board to show subtasks in swimlanes by story whowing or filtering only one of the epics within the project and the second board to show subtasks in swimlanes by story  for the other epic. 

The logic being within the same project we have two different teams working on two separate but related parts of the one project. Each team has a separate epic each with having multiple subtasks for each of several issue (stories) that make up the two epics (components) of the project. 

The Issue : with Swimlanes by stories can't separate the epics into different boards

Despite days of effort and searching and trialling I can't seem to be able to come up with appropriate quick filters that separate the epics (into the separate boards) and their stories in swimlanes (based on stories) with Subtasks relating only to the stories. 

Both epics and their stories and sub tasks show up in both boards and confuse what to me seems a simple need. 

Would be grateful on any assistance with steps to achieve the aim.

2 answers

1 accepted

0 votes
Answer accepted

@David Wright if you have two separate boards for two of the epics then you can simply modify the query filter for both of the boards based on separate epics. OR if there is only one epic and different stories need to appear on two different boards with respect to the teams then you can add two separate labels on the parent stories and modify the query filter for each boards respectively.

How you can do that:
i) Click the ... on top right and then click Board settings.
ii) Under SETTINGS heading on top left, make sure you are on General page.

iii) Under filter section, click View Filter Query.

iv) Update the query either with respect to an epic (in case if there are two different epics for two different boards). Make sure query has one epic in it. IF there is one epic for two boards then you need to add labels with epic.

v) Once update the query, then Save as and make sure that saved query filter is applied on General section under filter.

You need to do the above steps separately for each of the boards.

Let me know if that helps.

A sample query that you can update and save as query filter for two separate boards:

project = YOUR_PROJECT AND ( Labels = Production-issue ) AND "Epic Link" in (Epic_ID) AND status != CLOSED ORDER BY Rank ASC

This query will show tickets/sub-tasks associated with an epic and label on a board.
IF Labels part is not needed and you have two different epics then this query will work too:

project = YOUR_PROJECT AND "Epic Link" in (Epic_ID) AND status != CLOSED ORDER BY Rank ASC

You need to update the query filter accordingly for the two of the baords.

Hi again Furqan,

Thanks again for taking the time to explain this. It has been very helpful. I was unaware of the general filter query for a board which makes a lot of sense.

For this particular project I'm not using labels currently (but will), so I just used your jql suggestion copied below (except changing the text 'in' to '=' ie "Epic Link" = (Epic_ID) [as it threw an error on the 'in']

project = YOUR_PROJECT AND "Epic Link" in (Epic_ID) AND status != CLOSED ORDER BY Rank ASC

This filtered the correct Epic - great! However, the stories are listed except not by  swimlanes (noting swimlanes for the board is set to stories) and sub tasks don't show. Am trying to resolve why swimlanes  by stories and sub tasks are currently not being displayed. If I can resolve that, then you will have helped solve a major stumbling block - again my thanks.

You maybe in a different timezone but if not your (or others) further suggestions / would be welcome, otherwise I will again let you know if I get it resolved.

Hi again Furqan,

I have been able to resolve the issue in my last post but it threw up some additional issues before I finally got it working.

Per my previous response, using the jql as suggested I couldn't see the sub issues for the story, nor the swimlane.

The solution :

I finally resolved it by adapting the jql filter on the general tab from the following post :

How to get subtasks of an EPIC in a filter query?  

The jql I used is as follows :

project = ## AND (issuetype = Story AND "Epic Link" IN (##-10)) OR (issuetype = sub-task AND "parentEpic" IN (XX-10)) ORDER BY Rank ASC

This then worked as expected in the kanban board for the team I was working on ie:

1. Swimlanes were set to stories

2. Stories with subtasks were shown in swimlanes as expected

3. Stories without subtasks where shown in other issues

4. I could progress the subtasks along the swimlane as expected

Other Issues

However I then ran into some issues it took me sometime to resolve.

1. Editing the filter changed the filter for both boards + Could change the filter name

I copied the Kanboard as set up and working to a new board. I then created a new filter for the second epic and stories with swimlanes. This worked. However when I went back to the original kanban board, its filter had changed to the filter edited in the newly copied board.

I tried creating a new filter and saving it but despite changing the permissions from private to project (in filters). I couldnt change the filter name in the general tab as these filters were not listed in the filter names.

The solution : In order to get past this issue the only step that worked was to create a new board from scratch, set up the columns, create and save a new filter. This finally worked.

However I then ran into another issue which is probably unrelated.

2. Add Status button went missing in columns of board setttings

Despite being the jira administrator, the columns I added were missing statuses and thus my workflow columns did not all show.

Despite much searching (other administrators appeared to have the same issue. Add status button was there but went missing. I ahad a huge number of status values in the defualt columns instead of just one or two statuses for backlog and in progress issues.

I have been unable to resolve finding the add status button and still dont know why so many status options were visible. However I finally found the relevant statuses in the default columns and was able to then progress. However it has been an ordeal but I think I am there. The challenge will be to repeat the same steps by project.

Thanks again for your help which gave me the lead to finally solve the issue myself.

If you can advise why your jql didnt work or what I may have done that prevented it from working I would be happy to know, otherwise I will run with the above and leave these comments for others.



Like Furqan Ud Din likes this

Hi David,

Thanks for the detailed comments.
This is very helpful.

I am not sure why my jql didn't worked but thank you for providing the solution.

Let the comments here as is for reference to others.

Hi Furqan, 

Thanks very much for your prompt and helpful reply which looks clear to implement. It's different to anything I have tried. Look forward to having a go in a few hours time. Will let you know how I go.

Much appreciated.



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